Thursday, May 21, 2015

Ever since a friend lent me a copy of The Prophet, Khalil Gibran became a favorite poet, essayist, and thinker.  It's hard to imagine the critics received the book less than enthusiastically.   But, the general readership must have appreciated the beauty of his prose, because the book sold very well.   The 60's was the decade of his true vindication.  The hippie counterculture re-discovered his writings and The Prophet was passed from hand to hand and lines from his essays went from lips to lips on a daily basis.

When I began writing Destiny's Plan, I knew that —if I were to keep it authentic and do it justice—somehow or somewhere in the text Gibran had to appear.  To my utter satisfaction, Matthew rose to the occasion.  Even though Raquelita is also an enthusiastic reader, it made perfect sense Matthew would be the one to appreciate Gibran's writings.  Matthew is an "out-of-the-box" voracious reader. He loves Lorca—one of the best Spanish poets ever—and did enough research on Lorca to learn about his comments on "dark sounds" darned difficult to explain.  Therefore, his admiration for Gibran is a given. Thus, the line,

"Beauty is eternity gazing at itself in a mirror." 

The quote is not complete, but to Matthew, who was suddenly and thoroughly smitten by Raquelita it was enough.  Her clear golden eyes acted like a mirror to infinity, he saw his image reflected again and again. Quite the experience.  

Gibran wrote about love and beauty, but his themes were not always on carnal love, he wrote about spiritual love and about God.  Below I have included some of my favorite quotes.  Sorry, Matthew.

On God:

"When you love you should not say, 'God is in my heart,' but rather, "I am in the heart of God." And think not you can direct the course of love, for love, if it finds you worthy, directs your course."

On love:

"Love has no other desire but to fulfill itself.
But if you love and must needs have desires, let these be your desires:
To melt and be like a running brook that sings its melody to the night.
To know the pain of too much tenderness.
To be wounded by your own understanding of love;
And to bleed willingly and joyfully.
To wake at dawn with a winged heart and give thanks for another day of loving;
To rest at the noon hour and meditate love's ecstasy;
To return home at eventide with gratitude;
And then to sleep with a prayer for the beloved in your heart and a song of praise upon your lips."

"To know the pain of too much tenderness."  This is pure ambrosia to my romantic muse and my soul.  Can we relate to these thoughts in our skeptical and fast-paced world? Do we have the time to  grasp and meditate on what it means "To be wounded by your own understanding of love"?
"Love has no other desire but to fulfill itself", this is one of the biggest truths ever stated, but first we must give in to love, real and true.  How many of us can say that? 

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